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Online Learning

To protect the privacy of your account, as well as academic honesty, it is important that you do not share your login information with others. Cheating or plagiarism will not be tolerated. Any student found in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action as outlined by RLC’s Academic Integrity policy in the Student Handbook.


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Of course, the most important steps to being ready for online learning is access to a computer and internet connection: Online learning is simply not possible without these resources. Students should make arrangements to make sure they have these resources moving forward.

Online Learning FAQ — Frequently Asked Questions

How do online courses work?
Online courses are structured so that all of the course content traditionally delivered in the classroom is delivered online. Course content may be accessed through a learning management system (LMS) such as Canvas. Some classes may require a few on-campus meetings or scheduled online discussion sessions. The course syllabus will show the requirements for the course.

Should I take an online course?
Online learning is a very different environment than that of the traditional classroom. With that in mind, online learning is not for everyone. So, how can you tell? Your answers to the following questions will help you decide:

  • Am I self-motivated and self-disciplined?
  • Can I communicate effectively through written communication?
  • Do I have basic computer skills: word processing, internet browsing, email (including sending and receiving attachments?)
  • Do I have practically unlimited access to a computer and internet service?
  • Am I open-minded about sharing life, work and educational experiences?
  • Do I have the ability to learn new software without classroom instruction?

If you answered “yes” to most of these questions, chances are you are a good candidate for success in an online course. A few “no” answers to these questions may identify areas that need strengthened or addressed, but you may still decide that online learning is a good choice for you.

If you answered “no” to many of the questions, this may indicate that your chances for success may be greater in a traditional course setting at this time. As your skills and experience grow, you may decide to revisit the option of online learning in the future.

How do I access my online course?
Usernames and passwords for your online accounts will be automatically generated and given to you by your advisor when you register for classes. Access your online courses by visiting or clicking on the Canvas link from the MyRLC portal. Use your username and password to log in. Note: To protect the privacy of your accounts, it is important that you do not share your login information with others.

What is MyRLC?
The MyRLC portal is the central location that may be used to log in and manage most of your student accounts. Student accounts include Canvas, Online Student Records, Warriormail, and Electronic Library. Access the MyRLC portal at

Do I need specific technology skills or equipment?

In order to be successful in an online learning environment, you will need to have some basic computer skills. Your online learning experience will be less stressful if these competencies have been mastered.

  • Operate a web browser
  • Download, upload, and install files
  • Access your e-mail account
  • Send and receive e-mail with attachments
  • Use a word processor to create and print documents
  • Use presentation software (such as PowerPoint) to create presentation slides

It is also important that you have nearly unlimited access to a computer with Internet access. As for hardware and software requirements, please visit Canvas Minimum Requirements for information about requirements and recommendations

What is the difference between an “online course” and a “hybrid course”?
Courses at Rend Lake College are offered in the following structures or formats:

  • Face-to-Face – In this type of course, you will attend classes on campus or at an extension center in a physical setting with an instructor present. Canvas may be used for assignment submission, course document dissemination, etc.
  • Hybrid – The hybrid course will require you to complete a portion of the coursework online using Canvas and the remainder of the coursework will be completed in a face-to-face learning setting. Campus visits will be necessary for this type of class. Course numbers for a hybrid course will include a section number beginning with "Y", for example, CSCI 1101-Y1. The "Y" indicates a hybrid course.
  • Online – The online course is designed for you to complete your course online using Canvas. You are expected to have a computer available and access to the Internet. Course numbers for an online course will include a section number beginning with "N", for example, CSCI 1101-N1. The "N" indicates an online course.

Please note that some online courses require you to visit a test-proctoring site to complete the test requirements for the course. You will be informed of and instructed on test proctoring procedures by the course instructor.

Online access to the hybrid and/or online course may not be made available until the first day of class as early course availability is at the discretion of the instructor.

Please refer to the Official Catalog for more detailed information about your course.

Logging On

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Login NOW: Make sure you can access your Warriormail and Canvas accounts before you need to submit assignments. Some students have run into issues when logging into those accounts on their personal computers for the first time. The programs may not recognize the device. Avoid frustration and panic by making sure you have access to what you need as soon as possible. Login to Warriormail first. Students who try to login to their Canvas account before accessing Warriormail sometimes run into a 403 error message. If you do get a 403 error, you can either sign into another Google account or log out of all Google accounts and then sign in. 

Canvas FAQ — Frequently Asked Questions

What is Canvas? Canvas is an online Learning Management System. Once you are logged in, you can learn the terms and tools by clicking on the RLC Canvas Student Resource course or the Online Navigation Essentials (ONE 1500) orientation module. Both are on your Canvas Dashboard. 

What is the Canvas URL? OR

What login do I use? You will be prompted to log into a Google account. That is normal and expected. (Canvas is tied to your WarriorMail, which is actually a Google account.) Use the username (lastnamefirstinitial####) and password provided to you, but be sure to include with your username. If you receive an error message, check to see if you are already logged in to your browser under a different Google account, perhaps a personal account. Log out of the account and refresh the page to try again.

What if I get a 403 error? That is most likely because your browser is logged into a personal Google account. No problem. Just open a new tab in your browser and go to Log in with your WarriorMail username and password. This will do two things: 1) Log you into your WarriorMail and 2) Set your browser to allow a choice for Google accounts. Now visit again, choose your WarriorMail account and log in. That should get it!

How and when will students be added to Canvas courses? Students will be added to Canvas courses about one week before classes begin. 

Is there a Canvas app? Canvas offers a FREE App for Android and iOS users. Download the app from Google Play Store or the App Store. Search for the college and log in using your WarriorMail username and password. Learn more about the app at What is the Canvas Student app? Here is a quick tour of the Canvas App.

Why am I having problems submitting a Google Doc via the Canvas Student App? While trying to submit an assignment document from inside the app, students may see their documents but unable to select for submission. Here is an alternative way to accomplish that submission:
This is an "on the fly" video, but hopefully it will help. See How to Submit a Google Docs to the Canvas Student App for step-by-step documentation.

How do I receive text messages from my instructors about my course? Canvas allows you to set your notifications and add your cell phone as a contact in addition to your email. See How do I add a text (SMS) contact method in Canvas as a student? an external site.

What help is there for students?
• Help-Link - The help link within Canvas provides several help options for students! Of course, the RLC Help Desk will provide assistance, but students also have 24/7 access to Canvas tech support and resources. The RLC Help Desk is available Monday - Thursday from 8:00 am – 4:30 pm and Friday from 8:00 am - 4:00 pm. Send an email to [email protected] or call 618-437-5321, Ext. 1259. When emailing the Help Desk, please add a phone number for a quicker response. Response time will vary depending on the volume of requests. Please be patient—someone will contact you as soon as possible.

• The RLC Canvas Student Resource course is available on your Canvas dashboard! This course will be a resource course designed to provide help about Canvas for any RLC student

• Contact a librarian. A Library Resource Course is available on your Canvas dashboard. This course provides information that is available to you in RLC’s Learning Resource Center. 

What help is there for faculty?
• Help-Link - The help link within Canvas provides several help options for faculty! Of course, the RLC Help Desk will provide assistance, but faculty also have 24/7 access to Canvas tech support and resources. 

• A RLC Canvas Instructor Resource course is available for faculty on the Canvas dashboard! This course is a resource course designed to provide help for instructors.

Do you want to receive text messages from your instructors? Canvas allows you set your notifications and add your cell phone as a contact in addition to your email. See How do I add a text (SMS) contact method in Canvas as a student?


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Check your assignment dates: Not everything is due at the end of the week. Most online classes have assignments due on Fridays. But that is not the case for ALL classes as RLC makes its shift online. Students need to check their assignment dates for all courses because classes may differ.


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Online tutoring is available for those looking for assistance. We will be using the Zoom app for all online tutoring. To join an online Zoom tutoring session please email Dr. Kirk Rhodes at [email protected]. Below is a list of currently available times and sections for tutoring, if these times do not work for you, please let Dr. Rhodes know. Additional sections can be scheduled by request. Please contact Dr. Rhodes with any questions.

Online Tutoring Schedule

Summer 2022 Tutoring Hours

We will be using the Zoom app for all online tutoring. To join an online zoom tutoring session please contact Dr. Kirk Rhodes via Email. [email protected]

Below is a list of currently available times and sections for tutoring, if these times do not work for you please let Dr. Kirk Rhodes ([email protected]) know.

Math Lab Hours

Monday: 9 am - 7 pm

Tuesday: 9 am - 7 pm

Wednesday: 9 am - 3 pm

Thursday: 9 am - 3 pm

Friday: CLOSED

Writing Center Hours

Monday: 12 pm -2:30 pm (Zoom)

Tuesday: 12 pm - 8 pm

Wednesday: 8 pm - 4 pm

Thursday: 8 pm - 4 pm

Friday: CLOSED

Communications Lab

Contact Brandon Padget, Communications Lab Specialist, to schedule an appointment.
Room 125 in the North Oasis
Phone: 618.437.5321 Ext. 1311

*Any other online tutoring will be set up upon request, but does not have weekly slots currently. Please contact Dr. Kirk Rhodes with any questions, thank you.

Tech & Research Support

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Ask for help: If you run into issues accessing accounts or navigating the shift to online classes, you can always contact the Help Desk. We'll be monitoring emails and calls from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday – Friday. Of course, you can always leave a voicemail or send an email and we'll get to your issue as soon as we can. Send an email to [email protected] or call 618-437-5321, Ext. 1259. The Help Desk cannot send usernames or passwords via email, but if students leave a phone number in the email, the Help Desk will call them back with their info. Response time will vary depending on the volume of requests. Please be patient — someone will contact you as soon as possible.

Go to IT Help Desk

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Need help with research? We are here to help with any of your research projects; from choosing a topic to citing the resources you plan to use in your writing, presentations or speeches. You can ask questions by calling, emailing, using the Ask a Question link, or through a virtual meeting:

(618) 437-5321, Ext. 1276 | [email protected] | Ask a Question 

Let's meet up on Google Meet or Zoom to get you started with your research! Click here to request a meeting

A to Z Electronic Resources - check out all the resources that you have access to here!

Logging into the electronic resources (EBSCO, SIRs, JSTOR) requires you to use your RLC student username and password which is the same login you use for Canvas only you don't include the in the username.

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Do you need student support services? 

Whether you need tutoring, disability services, or other resources, the RL-Cares team is ready to assist you.

Email them at [email protected].

A complete listing of email addresses for RLC faculty and staff is HERE

About Online & Hybrid Courses

At Rend Lake College, an online course is a course that is 100% online without any face-to-face classroom, laboratory, clinical or field meeting time required. Students enrolled in online courses must have access to the Internet and word processing software. Students must complete Online Navigation Essentials prior to accessing the course. Students enrolled in RLC online courses may utilize the open computer lab located in the Learning Resource Center.

A hybrid course is a course that substitutes any portion of its face-to-face classroom, laboratory, clinical or field meeting time with an online component of teaching and learning. Students enrolled in hybrid courses must have access to the Internet and word processing software.

Degrees Offered

Associate of Science Degree in Business Option — Many people dream of earning a college degree, but the hectic schedules of work and family life make it difficult. Rend Lake College’s distance-delivered Associate in Science Degree may be the answer. This degree, which has a business focus, is made up of both online and hybrid classes to give you the flexible schedule you need. Most classes are delivered online, and the remaining hybrid classes are made up of online instruction with a small number of face-to-face meetings.

Distance-delivered instruction can be incredibly convenient for those who have tight schedules or are unable to attend class on a fixed schedule. You’ll need to have some basic computer skills and have access to a computer and the Internet in order to take advantage of this program.

For more details, contact the Academic Advising Center at 618-437-5321, Ext. 1266.

Classes Offered

To see if a class is offered online, or to view online classes in a degree or certificate program, follow the steps below.

Go to Self Service and search for classes. All sections that begin with an "N" are online.


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RLC online learning starts at ONE. Our Online Navigation Essentials, ONE 1500, includes the elementary principles of learning in an online environment. You’ll start with baby steps so you can hit the ground running in your online classes. 

Information Technology
Phone: (618) 437-5321 Ext. 1259
Toll-free (In-District): 1-800-369-5321 Ext. 1259
Email: [email protected]
Address: 468 N. Ken Gray Parkway, Ina, IL 62846 Attn: IT Help Desk
Fax Number: (618) 437-5677 Attn: IT Help Desk